"Last Holiday" is a 1950 black comedy starring Alec Guinness in fine form as mild-mannered salesman George Bird. Told by his doctor that he has a very short time to live, George is determined not to waste his final days, deciding to go on the holiday of a lifetime to live the rest of his life to the full.
Laughed I almost got Lampington's
- Last Holiday review by JD
Lampington's disease is clearly easily diagnosed. This part of the plot was a little quickly passed through but the rest was moving and brilliantly filmed. Cinematography of this standard is not currently popular. All of the actors are brilliant (for their time, sometime a bit theatrical) with a surprise appearance of Sid James. Recommended for all nostalgics.
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The Late Mr. Bird Helps Some Worms
- Last Holiday review by CH
The J. B. Priestley revival has continued apace, what with the National Theatre's continually touring production of An Inspector Calls. This film, however, is less well known, despite a dapper performance by Alec Guiness as Mr. Bird who draws together an ensemble cast. Sid James and Ernest Thesiger together is the most unlikely pairing until Sid appeared with Sean Connery in Hell Drivers. In fact, it has something in common with An Inspector Calls, for this is a tale about a small-time salesman who learns that he is going to die - and decides to go on a bit of a spree (at any rate, to somewhere resembling Bournemouth, spiv Sid laments being thwarted in a desire to sojourn in Brighton. For all the realism of this interestingly and diversely populated hotel, Guinness is as much an allegorical figure as the Inspector, one whose presence calls upon the others to study the course of their lives (as he himself has done, after being galvanised by a canny tailor to splash out on some fine jackets). With many an angle - and a neat camera angle - upon post-War Britain, this film resonates as much seventy years on.